Reconstruction of the English Street bridge
We are rebuilding the English Street bridge to cater for the widened Tullamarine Freeway and to improve access to Essendon Fields. The two pedestrian bridges at Vaughan and Earl Streets have also been removed and will be replaced to allow for the freeway widening underneath.
Sketch perspective view of the reconstructed English Street bridge with new alignment. Disclaimer: Artistic impressions are for illustrative purposes only. Information presented is of a preliminary nature.
Project status, December 2016
English Street bridge will be completely closed from 7am on Tuesday 3 January until 12pm on Wednesday 25 January
We'll be taking down the old bridge and building a new one to cater for additional lanes on the Tullamarine Freeway underneath and on the bridge itself.
We've chosen this time to do our roadworks when there are 20 percent fewer cars on the road. We've worked with our contractors to reduce the original six-week program to a much shorter period of 23 days so we can get the job done quicker.
Our crews will be working around the clock during this closure to remove and rebuild English Street bridge.
There will be changes to the way you access Essendon Fields and Airport West during this time, and Wirraway Road will be open at all times.
Drivers, cyclists and pedestrians are encouraged to plan ahead and allow extra time.
Drivers will be detoured onto the Tullamarine Freeway and into Essendon Fields and Airport West using the entry and exit ramps. This detour may add up to 15 minutes to your journey.
Although the English Street entry and exit ramps will remain open as much as possible, there will be nightly ramp closures from Sunday, 15 January. Some daytime ramp closures may be required and we will communicate these in advance.
During the 23-day closure, the Tullamarine Freeway will also be closed from 5 to 8 January so we can take down the bridge. There will be a different detour for this time. If you're heading to the airport, please plan ahead and allow an extra 40 minutes of travel time.
Cyclists can use Wirraway Road to access Essendon Fields.
During the bridge closure, a shuttle bus will operate for pedestrians and people with a disability between Airport West and Essendon Fields. This service will run 24 hours a day, with extra services in the morning and afternoon peak periods, stopping at bus stops on Matthews Avenue and at a number of locations within Essendon Fields. More information will be available closer to the date.
Earl Street and Vaughan Street pedestrian bridges removed, July 2016
The Vaughan and Earl Street pedestrian bridges have been temporarily removed to accommodate the widening of the freeway. They will be rebuilt in late 2016.
View of a time-lapse video of the bridges' removal.
Road users will enjoy the following benefits:
- better access to Essendon Fields
- less congestion
- improved look of the English Street bridge area.
About the upgrade
The proposed reconstruction includes:
- the lengthening and widening of the bridge to cater for an extra lane in each direction on the Tullamarine Freeway underneath
- the rebuilding of the pedestrian bridges at Vaughan and Earl Streets
- the creation of a disability compliant pedestrian crossing at English Street.
Sketch perspective view of reconstructed English Street bridge from inbound carriageway. Disclaimer: Artistic impressions are for illustrative purposes only. Information presented is of a preliminary nature for discussion.
Business online survey
In October 2015, we invited businesses in the Essendon Fields area to take part in an online survey. We are using the results to help plan the reconstruction and minimise impacts.
Here are the key points:
- Maintaining access to business at all times is crucial.
- Some businesses operate outside of normal business hours.
- Most businesses receive deliveries daily.
- The majority of employees drive to work.
- Weekdays are busier than weekends.
- November and December are the busiest months.
- English Street, Matthews Avenue, Wirraway Road and the Matthews Avenue ramps are all critical roads.
It was raised whether a bike lane on English Street could be considered during the reconstruction of the bridge.
While a bicycle lane is not in the current scope for the project, cyclists will be able to share the road with other road users to access Essendon Fields from English Street Bridge.
Bicycle boxes, the green area marked for bicycles at the front of the intersection, are being added at the intersection of Matthews Avenue and English Street to provide increased safety for cyclists to move through traffic signals.
The following print-friendly fact sheets are available:
- English Street bridge overview PDF, 727.9 KB.
- English Street business online survey results PDF, 633.5 KB
If you have any questions about what's happening at English Street then please contact us on 1300 783 947 (select option 2) or email@example.com.